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Monday, November 28, 2011

Monday Spotlight on Anita Mae Draper--and giveaway

Anita Mae Draper may not be pubbed in fiction yet, but I think it won't be long after reading her descriptions of these weather scenes and after reading all the contests she has finalled in! Anita is also very talented in photography, and I am so glad she shared her beautiful Canadian countryside with the rest of us.

She's also very generous, and has offered to give away a copy of Lynette Eason's LIS Threat of Exposure to someone who leaves a post on this blog before next Monday. So be sure to let her know how much you enjoy her photos and leave your email info so we can contact you if you win!

Prairie Weather Treasures by Anita Mae Draper

It’s almost December and the only reason I haven’t been listening to Christmas music yet is because the weather has been so nice this year. Sure it’s windy out there and we’ve had our share of snow, but a couple inches is nothing compared to the 2 feet we sometimes have by this time. Because our weather is fickle and dangerous, I thought I’d show you some photos and a video of the gamut we can run through each year.

First off are the sundogs which show up when there are ice crystals in the air. Sundogs (also called mock suns) are a phenomena we see several times a winter. They are caused by light refracting through ice crystals – you know, the kind that turn the trees white. Although the twin mock suns on either side are the actual sundogs, the whole thing is commonly called a sundog in these parts much like a ring around the moon is called a moondog.

The photo above was taken at approx. 9:30 am on our way to church on Feb 7, 2010, but sundogs can appear throughout the day.

We see other things in the winter, too like the effect of frost on things. One morning, I went out and found the frost on certain items, only. It particularly liked our van antenna:

And some mornings, it’s just beautiful when it latches onto the trees…


I have to show you this video I made last March during a blizzard warning... a porcupine got the drop on me…



I can't believe it took so long to sink in that he was there. Sheesh.

Anyway, weather plays a big part of our life here on the Canadian prairies. We have hot, lazy summer days, spring floods and autumn northern lights as well, but ‘tis the season for snow.

Have you ever seen a sundog? Felt the cold bite of a -40C/F wind? Tasted a snowflake before it touched the ground?~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Anita Mae Draper is retired from the Canadian Armed Forces and lives on the prairie of southeast Saskatchewan, Canada with her hubby of 30 plus years and 2 of their 4 kids. She writes stories set on the prairies of Saskatchewan, North Dakota, Montana and Wyoming. Anita Mae has semi-finaled in the Historical Romance category of the ACFW's 2011 Genesis contest and finaled in the Inspirational category of the 2011 Daphne du Maurier, the 2011 Fool for Love, the 2011 Duel on the Delta and 2009 Linda Howard Award of Excellence contests. You can find her at http://www.anitamaedraper.com/

16 comments:

Anita Mae Draper said...

Rose, thank you for inviting me to post on your blog. I know talking about the weather is such a trivial detail, but up here it's the first thing mentioned in a conversation. Probably because it plays such an important role in prairie life.

I hope you have a blessed day.

Anita Mae.

Josh Healy said...

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Susanne Dietze said...

Fun post! Thanks for hosting Anita, Rose.

I love the photos, but my favorite is the van antenna. That's amazing.

I've never seen a sundog. I have tasted snowflakes, but alas, not today. Here it's foggy and gloomy.

Merry said...

I've seen sundogs before but the name is new! Beautiful pictures of your winter wonderland. I'm a Lynette Eason fan, please add me to the drawing. Thanks!
worthy2bpraised at gmail dot com

Anita Mae Draper said...

Hey Susie, nice to see you here.

That frosty morning with the antenna was weird because the frost was hard and thick, but only on certain things. It covered the antenna from top to bottom, but that was about it for the van. On the hand pump we have for yard art, it was on the metal rod that goes down to draw the water up, but not on any other part of the cast iron pump. However, it coated one side of the cast iron rooster clanger by the door. So it wasn't the material that was attracting the frost.

I love seeing God's handiwork, but especially when it's different from the usual. :)

Foggy and gloomy in California? That just doesn't sound right. LOL

Thanks for visiting me here, Susie.

Anita Mae.

Anita Mae Draper said...

Thanks for entering, Merry.

I agree... Lynette is a very good suspense writer and I wouldn't be giving this one away if I didn't already have a duplicate. :)

Your comment reminded me to say that sundogs - or sun dogs - as they're also know as, are found all over the world (even in Italy and Greece) but many people don't take time to look up at the sky and notice them.

Thanks for the compliment, Merry. :)

Anita Mae.

Debra E. Marvin said...

Okay, now I'm home and can comment!

We've had our share of nasty days that look a lot like that but the wind chill rarely goes that far down!
Close though.

Great photos Anita Mae and I especially enjoyed the porcupine. I've never seen one in person though I know they're around in the higher elevations of the state.

Thanks Rose and Anita. We're going to have 60F again tomorrow. This is so strange!

Anita Mae Draper said...

Hey Debra, would you believe that's the temp without the windchill? Yup. It'll go down to
-54F with the windchill... so cold that our spit will explode before it hits the ground. But not every year, thank you God.

I used to think porcupines were cute. But this spring that porcupine that punked me started to eat our trees. If you click on the corner of that video of mine, head over to my YouTube Channel and you see the video I took of him climbing down a tree. Up close and personal. He left a horrid mess behind of stripped branches that looked awful this summer. :(

60F, eh? I guess I can't complain. It's been melting here for several days. The problem is it freezes overnight and leaves a sheet of ice behind. Fun for Nick to practice driving on since his test is in 2 wks. Ha!

Thanks for visiting. :)

Anita Mae.

Joy said...

Very cool critter!

Anita Mae Draper said...

Thanks, Joy. :)

Suzie Johnson said...

Anita, your pictures are stunning. You're a great photographer! Thanks for sharing. I don't think I've ever seen a sundog, but I have seen a moondog.

Anita Mae Draper said...

Hey Suzie, thanks!

I guess the main difference with a moondog other than the night is that it's usually a complete circle whereas that's rare for a sundog - not impossible, just not common.

Nice seeing you here. Thanks for the support. :)

Anita Mae.

karenk said...

a wonderful posting...thanks for the chance to read this wonderful story :)

karenk
kmkuka at yahoo dot com

Anita Mae Draper said...

Thanks Karen. It's nice seeing you here. And you're welcome. I love giving things away. :D

Anita Mae.

Jo said...

Great photos! I enjoyed the post and the offer for a great giveaway.

Blessings,
Jo
ladijo40(at)aol(dot)com

Anita Mae Draper said...

Thanks, Jo. I'm glad you enjoyed them.

And thanks for entering the draw. :)

Anita mae.